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How to sculpt a killer Likeness

Find out what you can learn with Art Heroes when you're already a Lead Character Artist for a video game developer.
Read on to meet Rouge Factor's Hugo Sena, who created a super realistic likeness of Thusnelda from the show Barbarians.
Meet Hugo Sena
Tell us about yourself
My name is Hugo Sena, I live on Reunion island, close to South Africa. I'm currently the lead character artist at Rogue Factor.

I've always loved all types of art when it comes to character. Be it anime, super stylized, ultra realistic. All of it presents some challenges and rewards and I often find myself switching between all of them. I've been doing 3D for close to 10 years, with its ups and downs.
How it started
What's the name of your Project? Where did the idea come from? Why did you choose it?
For my project, I chose Thusnelda from the show Barbarians, played by the actress Jeanne Goursaud. When I saw her character when looking for something on netflix and I immediately knew I wanted to make it in 3D.
Character Development
What were the main milestones for you?
Main milestones were when I first applied all of the details, then, when I first saw her with the diffuse map and the face paint. The last milestone is when I put everything in unreal 4 and started tweaking.

Patience was definitely what helped me get the results I wanted. I always tend to want to have something pretty quick or easily get bored when projects are too long, so this was a fine line to navigate. Of course, both Marlon and Fareed's feedback, as well as the community, really helped propel the piece forward.
"Be patient and ask for feedback.

A new and fresh set of eyes really come a long way when you need to find what's wrong with your work. And patience to help you pull through when you think you can't."

Hugo Sena
Art Heroes Student
Challenges
What were your biggest challenges while working on this project? What did you struggle with?
Getting the right likeness always was a challenge for me, and that's mainly why I took the course. I wanted to be able to create a likeness and a super realistic character. What I struggled the most was the beginning phases, when you have to nail the shape perfectly. Even though I know the steps and the workflow, it's something I find really difficult
How did you overcome these challenges?
I approached them both with the help of everyone and with patience. The secret was really to move things little by little, watching from every angle until all the pieces fit. And of course rest my eyes when at some point I couldn't see what was wrong anymore. I thought this was an easy process for people like Marlon but it turns out it's just as difficult for everyone and it's a matter of always pushing forward.
It all came together when I made the first diffuse pass, or just a basic polypaint, it really showed i was on the right track
What's Next?
What was your main takeaway from the program?
I'm finished with this project, and I can now take all that I've learned with it and apply it onto my next project.
Final Project
Artwork: Hugo Sena
Reference: Jeanne Goursaud as Thusnelda from Barbarians
Useful Links
Connect with Hugo on Artstation: scythe
Follow Hugo on Instagram: scythe_ssh
Text author: Hannah Barmes Healy
Artwork by: Hugo Sena